African Message To The Globe On Nuclear Weapons

By Abdulrazaq O Hamzat

Countries are struggling to acquire nuclear capabilities to guarantee their independence and security, but no one has been able to show clear evidence of how nuclear weapon protects, whereas, we have evidences of how the weapon against humanity destroys.

While such destruction took place more than 70 years ago, precisely in August 1945, Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki which suffers from the cruelty of human indiscretion are yet to recover from the impact of the grave tragedy. Without evidence of any goodness nuclear
weapon has done the world, how do one makes meaning from the escalating tension between U.S and North Korea, over the latter’s nuclear program?

Donald Trump and Kim Jong-Un are made up of the same specie. Hot headed, aggressive, and violent. Meanwhile, one represents USA and the other North Korea, but in character, it appeared they are born by the same womb of bombardment.

From the look of things from these two men now described as” Rocket Man and the Giant Goliat”, it seems they are set for show down. If US insist on North Korea dismantling its nuclear weapon, Kim Jong will no doubt resist that by all means possible, as contained in his personal
response to Trump’s speech at the United Nations Security Council.

In my views as a peace professional, it is a settled case that the world will have to live with a nuclear North Korea, at least for now. I doubt if there is any amount of diplomatic efforts that may persuade Jong to discard the weapon against humanity, especially when they are
witness to what happened in Libya and Iraq.

Some analyst have argued that, the attitude of Trump, especially at a global platform like the UN security council, where he threatened to destroy North Korea provide more justification for Kim Jung to keep its nuclear weapon. I am forced to agree with this view.

However, Simon Abah in a publication on Punch newspaper argued that, a nuclear-armed North Korea wouldn’t only be dangerous for regional stability(Korean Peninsula) and United States, but to the entire world. According to him, North Korea is not a democratic country.
Democratic countries hardly go to war with another democratic country without parliamentary approval. Here, meaning Jong is a leader with a poor human rights record in the habit of killing his own people with ballistic missiles and getting a heck out of it. Can a US president ever authorize the use of a nuclear weapon unilaterally? But the North Korean can he argue.

While the above point is very valid, it is important to note that, 8 countries already have nuclear warheads and not all of them practice democracy as it should be practiced. U.S has it. Russia also does. The same with China, UK and France. Even India and Pakistan also have
nuclear weapons, and many suspects that Israel also do have it, though it wasn’t announced.

If all these countries can have nuclear weapons and keep it despite its destructive capability, can we morally justify the condemnation of those countries who aspire to have it too?

It has been proven over and over again that Mr Trump is rash and unpredictable, this is a quality he his proud to carry and in my view, the only thing that can restrain him a bit is the consciousness that his North Korean counterpart, who is as rash and unpredictable as him
may also have mutual destructive power. Anything outside that may prove fatal for Jong, hence his country’s determination to hold unto their nuclear weapon, which they had invested billions of dollars into building over the years.

The real questions we should be asking is that, why should any democratic nations have such deadly weapon if they don’t want others to have it? If the weapon is so destructive, that they fear it could be misused, why do they keep theirs? Isn’t it only proper that all countries with nuclear weapon destroy it? Until the world is nuclear free, diplomacy may not prevent others from acquiring it.

As it stands today, we are unsure what may happen next, but the tension is really rising and the possibility of a nuclear war has never been this close. All thanks to Trump UN speech which threatens to destroy North Korea and sanction Iran, coupled with his numerous
inciting tweets.

No wonder many tends to agree with Zimbabwe President, Robert Mugabe who advise Mr. Trump to please blow his trumpet in a musical way towards the values of peace, unity, co-operation, togetherness, dialogue which UN have always stood for and which we read in UN very sacred document — the charter of the United Nations.

The undiplomatic attitude of Mr rump really calls for concern. Stephen Collinson had written in a publication titled Donald Trump’s undiplomatic diplomacy that President Donald Trump is quickly becoming the world’s most undiplomatic — and unpredictable – diplomat. That’s
not far from the truth. The publication followed Trump’s tweet, which described the efforts of his Secretary of State, Mr. Rex Tillerson of opening lines of communication with North Korea as a waste of time, and seeming to rule out a diplomatic resolution to the nuclear-edged
confrontation with Pyongyang. “I told Rex Tillerson, our wonderful Secretary of State, that he is wasting his time trying to negotiate with Little Rocket Man,” on Twitter, using the derogatory nickname he has assigned to, the North Korean leader. “Save your energy Rex,”,
“we’ll do what has to be done!” Stephen said.

While it is true that negotiations with North Korea have long proved frustrating to American leaders. Mr. Bush and President Clinton both tried talks and granted concessions while ultimately failing to prevent North Korea from developing nuclear weapons, something that
Trump described as a failure he doesn’t intend to repeat. However, the outcome with previous US presidents is not unexpected since American itself has the weapon it is attempting to prevent others from having. US leaders lack moral justification to persuade others from pursuing
nuclear.

Meanwhile, Nigeria has taken the bold step to ensure African is nuclear free. The giant of Africa pledged Africa’s support to the non-proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction mass (WMD), saying a world free of nuclear weapons is the ideal society it envisaged.

Prof. Tijani Bande, Nigeria’s Permanent Representative to the UN, delivered this position on behalf of the African Group at the 72nd Session of the UN General Assembly General debate on disarmament and international security. The Nigerian envoy said: “The continued
existence and possession of nuclear weapons do not guarantee security but an affirmation of the risks of their potential use. “Our world, including the outer space, must be free of nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction. “It is in this context that the African
Group stresses the need for the nuclear weapons States to cease their further modernization, upgrading, refurbishment, or extending the lives of their nuclear weapons and related facilities”. He concluded that the time has come for the world to speak with unanimity towards
ensuring a world free of nuclear weapons and all other weapons of mass destruction.

In view of this, I make bold to say that the world must learn from Nigeria and Africa, in its quest for global peace and security. A world seeking peace and security cannot keep nuclear weapon. Nationsacross the globe must understand that, nuclear weapon does not protect anyone, it destroys everyone. Therefore, i hope that reason and diplomacy prevail to avert the catastrophe that may likely unfold from further escalation of the current crisis.

Abdulrazaq O Hamzat is the Executive Director of Foundation for Peace
Professionals

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